What I’ve Learned From Mentorship

WhatLearnedThroughMentorshipI’ve been fortunate to have had several amazing mentors so far in my career as a Pilates teacher. I can honestly tell you that I believe mentorship has made the most significant difference in my professional development as a teacher. If you’re a Pilates instructor who’s looking to improve their teaching, I encourage you to find a seasoned mentor.

Through a friend, I was introduced to my first Pilates mentor, Aimee McDonald-Anderson (she’s in the photo to the right and still teaching in Michigan so look her up if you’re in the Midwest). I had just begun my STOTT PILATES® teacher training. She welcomed me into her studio where I practice taught, observed her sessions, and met with her on a weekly basis. During our weekly private sessions I honed my physical practice and asked tons of questions to clarify issues that had come up during my practice teaching. Even after 14 years of mentorship from Aimee, she continues to be a tremendous support.

Through the years I had other wonderful mentors who I greatly admire. Each mentor offered a different perspective on teaching but all have helped me to grow as an instructor. In looking back, here are the three biggest insights I learned from my mentors. Read More

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Exam Prep To Go: Study Tips for the Busy Student

StudyTipsChances are you’re busy. There is no doubt that balancing work, family, and daily commitments while training to be a Pilates instructor can be a lot. So it’s important to find ways to squeeze in study for your certification exam. But I bet if you dedicate a few minutes everyday towards preparing for the test, you’ll make steady progress.

Erica, Blue Sparrow Pilates’ Education Coordinator and recently STOTT PILATES® certified instructor, shared with me her super smart tricks for carving out a little study time every day. I recommend you try each of these strategies for one week. At the end of three weeks you will likely shock yourself with the progress you’ve made!

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On the Air

Hey guys!

I thought you might get a kick out of hearing a commercial I did for Constant Contact. It was really fun to go into the recording studio. But much harder than I thought it would be! Does anyone like hear ing their own voice!?!?!

It’ll be airing through June on the following radio Bay Area radio stations.

Yours truly,

holly-Furgason_sm

 

Confidence & Vulnerability

ConfidenceVulnerability_blogOver the years as a studio manager and owner, I’ve had the opportunity to hire many wonderful instructors that are new to teaching Pilates. Even the best new Pilates teachers can struggle with confidence; it was huge roadblock for me too.

It’s common for these teachers to be knowledgeable, smart, eager, and passionate but it’s almost as if they want to be so good that they sabotage themselves. By trying to constantly be awesome at everything, they doubt themselves and clients lose trust because the teachers demonstrate a lack of confidence.

Self-confidence and vulnerability are linked. You must make yourself vulnerable to teach. But you have to keep fear in check. This is a difficult balance to strike.

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How to Create Inspired E-Newsletters

InspiredENewslettersMany studio owners and teachers ask me how to get started creating inspired e-newsletters for their studios and clients. Here are a few reasons I love newsletters and some quick tips to get you started with your own!

Newsletters can be a really fun way to consistently reflect on what you’re learning about, what you currently love about teaching, and what inspiration you’ve gained from your clients. It cultivates the habit of always listening for a tiny spark of an idea. Often these ideas come from clients having a-hah moments, from becoming inspired by you fellow teachers, or by making a new connection. This practice of listening and reflecting is critical for continued growth as a teacher. That means that not only will your newsletter be a great way for you to network, but it will also help you to be more engaged in your work and with your clients. It can become a platform for your own learning and growth!

Sounds great right?! So let’s get started!

Make It a Labor of Love by Setting Time Aside to Write:  It does take a considerable amount of time to create articles, videos, and photos. But look forward to it each week by setting aside an hour or so to create the piece. If you don’t set time aside, it will be the last item on your to-do list which will make creating the story a hassle, hastily put together, or completely forgotten. For me, this creative time is first thing in the morning. Still in my pjs, I curl up with a cup of tea and get to writing.

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